Glitzy, glamorous & gobsmacking – probably the three best adjectives to describe the 2015 SC Magazine Awards Europe, set within the grandeur of the historic Grosvenor House hotel. Can you think of 3 better words? Read on for alternatives.
It was a busy first day of Infosecurity Europe 2015, which is now back at the Olympia Exhibition Centre since the Earls Court venue is due to be bulldozed and turned into luxury apartments. All the meeting areas in Olympia were busy from early on including the Hand & Flower, the Hilton bar, Pizza Express etc, but we still managed to conduct good meetings with clients and strategic vendor partners. The atmosphere at Infosec is always buzzing (take note CeBIT) and this year was no different, it was a busy hive of relationship building and business.
In contrast, walking into the evening’s event at the Grosvenor House was a completely different world. The setting was, sumptuous, the Champagne flowing. Everyone had made an effort to look their best, and although we had already seen many of the same people earlier in the day, what a difference a ball-gown and black-tie makes. Given that the Grosvenor House has been our client for over a decade, we were salivating at the thought of dinner, knowing weeks in advance what was going to be on the menu. After a day fuelled only by coffee and croissant, this was manna from heaven.
We were kindly invited to attend by Hexis (part of KEYW corp) who we are working with to expand the penetration of their excellent Hawkeye G APT solutions into the UK and European markets. A relatively new brand fighting against some of the more established names in Security, it wasn’t much of a surprise that FireEye went home with the award – although given the capabilities of Hawkeye, there could well be a different outcome next year.
Ed Byrne, the Irish comedian with the floppy hair and a keen disposition for hill-walking, was the funniest I’ve ever seen him. Perhaps it was because he was following on from what were quite often boring and tedious presentations at the various stands at Infosec? How he managed to get Ryan Air, the story of his and Mrs Byrne’s engagement, the air conditioning in the Great Room, the Grand Canyon and so much more into a short set is astounding. He was even funny when reading out the results awards – although personally I found some of the results even funnier.
SC Magazine does a great job for the industry. It makes information security and the myriad of technologies easier to digest for the end customers. In my previous relationship with them as a security vendor, it certainly is good ‘marketing budget’ working hard. In a world where Shadow IT has never been more out of the shadows, it’s important to be able to communicate with non-techie people – but really the job of helping end customers understand what they need should be left with organisations like Infosec Partners. Yes it was an awards event, so naturally not everyone can be the winner – but it’s worthwhile remembering that clients need to tailor their security strategy according to their needs, their budget and risk appetite and quite often this means not just looking at the name topping the list in a magazine.
Now for the other 3 words I promised you, here they are: Tipsy, Merry and Sozzled. I think I did rather well to stay in the second category especially with more drinks flowing following the awards, and early morning client meetings the next day. How did you do?
By Fran Ordillano, Consulting Partner & Commercial Director (Infosec Partners Group)